North American International School is a dual curriculum school, teaching both the American and Ministry of Education curriculums.
After 11 years of being rated Acceptable, North American International School has been rated Good in the 2019-20 KHDA inspection process. The full report can be found under the Inspection report tab. An update to this review will be completed in due course.
The story so far...
North American International School is located in Al Mizhar and currently has some 475 students on its roster, down considerably from 600 two years ago. Almost a third (32 percent) of the students are Emirati and the majority of teachers hold an Indian passport.
The school aims to "develop lifelong learners and future leaders by continually reviewing and building an enriched American curriculum, promoting student achievement, encouraging integrity and nurturing a desire to learn." The school has been in operation since 2007 and has received an Acceptable rating for the last nine inspections.
Heading up the school is principal Sonia Mahajan, who's been in the position since 2009, adding continuity to the school's leadership.
What about the curriculum?
North American International School follows the common core standards for English and Mathematics with all other subjects following the North Carolina Standard Course of Study. Arabic and Islamic Education are based on the Ministry Standards and the UAE National Education is incorporated into the Social Studies curriculum.
The school is in the process of accreditation by NEASC, a North American accrediting body, and is currently working towards additional accreditation this year.
What the inspectors say?
Student progress and attainment is generally Good across the school, although attainment in mathematics dropped to Acceptable in the middle and high school in the school's latest inspection. There was however, improvement in the progress of students in English and Islamic Education in the elementary school.
The school is "successful in developing students’ personal and social skills. Across all phases, students have positive attitudes and behave well, " the KHDA notes. Furthermore, "Senior staff provide effective leadership in the development of partnership with parents. Parents benefit from many opportunities to be involved in the school’s work."
Overall this is an Acceptable rated school, and has been consistently since inspections began. WhichSchoolAdvisor.com, and no doubt its key stakeholders - students, parents and teaching staff - would very much like to see it begin to progress closer towards a Good rating, the minimum the KHDA would like to see in schools across the UAE. For that there is work to do.
Over the last three inspections inspectors have noted the need to improve the quality of teaching; develop students' learning skills, including critical thinking, independent learning and inquiry; align internal assessments with external standards and use the results to improve the curriculum and teaching; enhance the identification of and support for students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND); and increase the rigor of school self-evaluation activities.
These are quite challenging goals, but improvements are being made, slowly, to the curriculum and to the quality of lessons. There is a way to go, but with its effective leadership and relatively good staffing and facilities, it has the capacity and capability - with time - to get there.
What about the facilities?
The facilities at the school includes:
Fees at NAIS range from AED 28,497 in KG1 to AED 45,595 in Grade 12 - towards the mid-range plus scale. For this, we would expect to see high inspection ratings.
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